PS5 uses 1440p on its HDMI output, finally!

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Loudly requested by some gamers since the console’s launch, 1440p support on the PlayStation 5’s HDMI output is finally on its way, and even already available to system software beta testers.

Sony PlayStation 5 (PS5)



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Sony PlayStation 5 (PS5) Digital Edition

Introductory price €399


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It was about time, some would say. From July 28, Sony’s PlayStation 5 will receive the ability to send a video signal in 1440p on its HDMI output. This new format is in addition to the 720p, 1080i/p and 2160p (4K) already supported by the machine through new system software implemented today in beta. That brings Sony’s machine finally in line with not only Microsoft’s Xbox Series X and S, but even the Xbox One S and One X, which have all offered 1440p since they hit the market.

The drop-down menu of video definitions available in the PS5's sound and picture settings

1440p is inserted between 1080p and 2160p, finally!

© Sony Interactive Entertainment

Release for PC monitors and 120Hz TVs, but without HDMI 2.1

This news certainly won’t fundamentally change the lives of all PS5 owners, far from it, but it still represents a real liberation for those gamers. The first and most obvious use is for a console connected to a PC monitor of 2560 x 1440 px, one of the most common screen definitions today. While some of these monitors are capable of taking a 2160p signal as input and upscaling it to their panel resolution themselves, it’s only a minority of them. With most models, the only signal definition allowed by both the PS5 and the monitor was 1080p, with the inevitable consequence of a final image that was less than ideal in sharpness. A problem that no longer occurs.

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Another situation to note is that some 4K TVs are compatible with 120 Hz signals but not HDMI 2.1 – this is especially the case for many of the 2018 and 2019 models from Samsung. Being limited to the speeds of the HDMI 2.0 standard on their inputs, these televisions cannot receive a 2160p signal at 120Hz, and in fact the only way to access 120Hz modes on the few compatible PS5 games was to switch to 1080p. But the same bit rates, on the other hand, are quite sufficient for a 1440p signal at 120 Hz, which therefore becomes a much more acceptable compromise. In particular, it makes little sense for those televisions with 40fps display modes that we’re seeing popping up on more and more titles (and which require a 120Hz signal to display in a perfectly stable manner).

A bit of infidelity with HDMI specifications

The addition of this 1440p compatibility is apparently a small revolution for PlayStation, which until now seemed to have the principle of always complying with the specifications defined by the HDMI Forum – specifications which precisely do not allow carrying a 1440p video stream. It’s this same extreme rigor that seems to explain why the PS5’s variable refresh rate feature strictly adheres to the HDMI VRR standard and no one else, not even the AMD FreeSync standard from which it’s derived.

Finally, it should be noted that since the beginning of this article we have been talking about the definition of the video signal sent via the HDMI output of the console, and not about the definition of internal rendering of games, which is completely decor related. There are already countless PS5 games that use 1440p as a target for their 3D rendering, where the “source” image produced is then simply upscaled by the console itself to 1080p or 2160p before being rendered. sent to the screen.

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Other new features: folders for games and a comparison tool for 3D audio

The 1440p video output is not the only novelty that the new PS5 firmware brings. The latter also introduces “playlists” that the user can use to organize the collections tab on their console interface. Files, in short, which will undoubtedly be very useful, especially for subscribers to the new Extra and Premium formulas of PlayStation Plus.

That

playlists

© Sony Interactive Entertainment

Finally, in the audio settings, notice the appearance of a page where the user can directly compare stereo sound and 3D sound using a compatible audio device (headphones or TV speakers). This allows everyone to get a more concrete idea of ​​the difference that the famous Tempest 3D AudioTech system on the console brings and to decide with full knowledge of the facts, if we ever do not find this convincing difference, to disable the processing. .

Comparison page between stereo and 3D sound in PS5 sound settings

The new comparison page between 3D sound and stereo sound

© Sony Interactive Entertainment

The new system software is available now for those enrolled in the PS5 system software beta program. General availability will likely follow in the coming weeks.

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